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What is waste pressure power generation?

What is waste pressure power generation?
Natural gas and hydrogen gas are stored and transmitted through long-distance pipelines at a very high pressure. The gas is then sent to Pressure Letdown Stations (PLS) to decrease this pressure, which prepares natural gas for localized or industrial use.[1] As a result, a significant amount of pressure (in the form of mechanical energy) is released into the atmosphere, otherwise known as “waste pressure.”
Waste pressure can be harnessed to generate clean electricity for a wide array of industrial processes. The primary component of waste pressure power generation is a turboexpander,[2] which depressurizes gas while capturing the excess mechanical energy. This energy then turns a turbine to generate electricity.
Why is waste pressure power generation important?
            Up to 51% of energy generated for industrial use is wasted, in part due to waste pressure.[3] This unused waste pressure has immense potential to generate electricity without emitting harmful greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. The electricity generated can be used for onsite industrial facility operations or distributed to meet localized electricity demand.
            In addition, fossil fuels like coal are currently the main suppliers of baseload power, or the amount of power needed to satisfy electricity demand at any given time.[4] Baseload power sources must provide a reliable and steady flow of electricity. Since natural gas demand remains consistent year-round, waste pressure can provide a stable and clean baseload power source.
Pressure Corp: Accelerating Industrial Waste Pressure Recycling
Pressure Corp is a Houston-based company founded in 2020 that provides waste pressure power generation to reduce industrial emissions without requiring capital from host facilities. Customers they serve include industrial facilities as well as natural gas and hydrogen pipeline and power plant operators.
Pressure Corp’s business model is structured around Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs), meaning that Pressure Corp manages the full process of transforming waste pressure into clean electricity.[5] Much like the solar industry, Pressure Corp manages the full process of transforming waste pressure into clean electricity.[6] They provide site studies for project feasibility; manufacturing, delivery, and installation of waste pressure power systems; and third-party financing for projects from infrastructure investors. They also address additional costs including procuring permits, sourcing carbon credits, and obtaining capital to accelerate the construction timeline of waste pressure projects. This integrated suite of services allows Pressure Corp’s customers to reduce industrial emissions with minimal technical and financial risks. Ultimately, Pressure Corp helps host facilities meet key emissions reductions goals and work towards Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance (ESG) targets.
Pressure Corp’s Current Project
            Pressure Corp is currently sourcing funds to deploy a project at a university in the Midwest United States, which would generate clean electricity from the waste pressure at the university’s power plant. The project would provide stable baseload power to the university’s electrical grid system. For those who are interested in supporting Pressure Corp with an Indication of Interest, you can visit the  Raise Green Marketplace to view their offer and learn more!



[1] Freddie Sarhan, “Magnetics-Based Turboexpander Enables Energy Recovery from Pressure Letdown Stations in Natural Gas Pipelines,” Magnetics Magazine, October 6, 2020, https://magneticsmag.com/magnetics-based-turboexpander-enables-energy-recovery-from-pressure-letdown-stations-in-natural-gas-pipelines-by-freddie-sarhan-vice-president-of-business-development-calnetix-technologies/.
[2]“Turbo-Expanders,” Ipieca, accessed October 25, 2022, https://www.ipieca.org/resources/energy-efficiency-solutions/power-and-heat-generation/turbo-expanders.
[3]Lindsay Morgan, “Decarb Connect Podcast: Waste Pressure Is Everywhere in the Energy System – How Can We Convert It to Clean Energy?,” Decarb Connect, March 25, 2022, https://decarbconnect.com/waste-pressure-is-everywhere-in-the-energy-system-how-can-we-convert-it-to-clean-energy/.
[4]“Baseload Power,” Baseload power - Energy Education, accessed October 25, 2022, https://energyeducation.ca/encyclopedia/Baseload_power.
[5] “Our Solution,” Pressure Corp, accessed October 25, 2022, https://www.pressurecorp.com/solution.
[6] “Solar Power Purchase Agreements,” SEIA, accessed October 25, 2022, https://www.seia.org/research-resources/solar-power-purchase-agreements.

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